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Could New Technology End Drunk Driving?

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Drunk driving continues to be a problem plaguing communities across the country - causing thousands of preventable car accidents and an average of 10,000 deaths each year. Many law enforcement agencies - including those here in Texas - have increasingly ramped up DUI enforcement to arrest drunk drivers and get them off the road. Because their efforts have yet to make any considerable dent, however, many scientists and safety experts are considering the use of new advanced technology to prevent intoxicated drivers from even starting their cars.

Last week, federal officials with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced that the new technology - known as the Driver Alcohol Detection System for Safety (DADSS) - could potentially eliminate drunk driving in America, and that it could be available in vehicles in as little as five years.

Here are some details about the technology:

  • Unlike ignition interlock devices (IIDs) some states require convicted drunk drivers to blow into before starting their vehicles, the Driver Alcohol Detection System for Safety doesn’t have large clumsy devices. Instead, it uses passive sensors to detect the presence of alcohol in the bloodstream.
  • Vehicles equipped with DADSS would be able to immediately register the BAC level of drivers when they breathe or when they touch contact points on starter buttons or gear shifts.
  • Safety officials believe the new technology could have a significant impact on roadway safety, similar to the safety impact of seat belts and air bags.

In the next several years, the NHTSA will work with manufacturers and auto makers to ensure the technology is fast enough and easy enough to use to become a common feature in new vehicles. Until that time, it becomes the responsibility of individuals to not get behind the wheel while intoxicated or impaired.

Unfortunately, drunk driving accidents are still far too common. Victims injured by impaired drivers have every right to pursue justice and compensation for their losses. For more information about drunk driving accidents and personal injury claims, reach out to The Daspit Law Firm.

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